Zero week was a little sloppy, but still provided an exciting start to the 2013 football season in Aurora.
A uneven, but emotionally charged season-opener saw Hinkley prevail 50-27 over Vista PEAK on Aug. 23 at raucous Aurora Public Schools Stadium as the Thunderbirds delivered Jaron Cohen a victory in his coaching debut.
Despite a rash of penalties on both sides — including an estimated 26 enforced in the first half alone — Hinkley forced seven turnovers and rode a four-touchdown pass performance from senior quarterback Austin Ruiz and strong performance along the lines to avenge a loss to the Bison on the same field nearly a year ago to the day.
“We were itching for a game and I think our kids came out a little too hyped up,” said Cohen, who coached his first game at Hinkley after coming from Liberty in Colorado Springs.
“The penalties are unacceptable, and they know that. I was really disappointed in that, but we’ll clean it up. It’s good to have correctable mental stuff and I was proud of how our guys competed, especially our offensive line.”
Ruiz threw a pair of touchdown passes to Jerry Demesvar in the first quarter, hit Chance Drake for a score in the second period and hooked up with Bryson Compton on another TD pass in the third period as part of a 135-yard passing game for Hinkley. Running behind a physical offensive line, Brandon Compton rushed for 123 yards and had touchdown runs of 12 and 7 yards and brother Bryson also scored, as did defensive back Kenneth Powell, who returned an interception 33 yards for a score.
Coach Pat Rock saw a much different story than he had last season, when his young Vista PEAK team downed Hinkley 20-14 in its first-ever varsity football game.
Vista PEAK quarterback Noah Butler was intercepted three times by the Hinkley defense, but did damage with his legs and finished with a rushing and passing touchdown.
Backup QB Adam Puehler caught a TD pass from Butler, then hit Isaiah Young with a 45-yard strike in the fourth quarter to round out Vista PEAK’s offensive highlights.
• The Eaglecrest softball team improved to 4-0 on the young season with a 4-2 Centennial League home victory against Mullen Aug. 27.
Junior Michenzie Pace broke a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the sixth inning with a solo home run and senior Rayle Glover had two hits and 2 RBI in support of sophomore Sarah Bushman, who pitched seven innings for the win with seven strikeouts.
• In a game Cherokee Trail coach Dick Hormann believes was one of the best softball games in recent memory, the Cougars outlasted rival Grandview 1-0 in nine innings Aug. 24 in an early Centennial League showdown.
A pitching duel between the Cougars’ Kayla Mashburn and Courtney Browne of the Wolves went to extra innings before Cherokee Trail freshman Alyssa Yoshida doubled home Haley Peffer with the lone run of the game in the top of the ninth inning.
The Cougars outhit the Wolves 11-3 —with Zoe Hinton and Christian Bobian getting three apiece — but baserunning mistakes kept the game tied.
Junior Emily Supercynski had two of Grandview’s three hits.
• The three-time defending Class 5A state champion Regis Jesuit boys golf team ran away with the Continental League tournament Aug. 26 at Lone Tree Golf Course, posting a 20-stroke victory and setting a team record.
Senior Jake Kelley shot a scorching 6-under-par 66 and senior Spencer Painton also dipped below par with a 68 to lead coach Craig Rogers’ Raiders, who finished with a team score of 280, topping the previous school record of 284.
Chris Korte — who played with Kelley and Painton on last season’s Regis Jesuit state championship team — along with newcomer Bennett Rogers each shot 1-over 73s to round out the scoring.
Junior Jack Lazzeri finished with a 78 for Regis Jesuit.
Courtney Oakes is Sports Editor of the Aurora Sentinel. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. Facebook: Aurora Prep Sentinel